Category Archives: Reviews

A Shadow in the Past International Blog Tour Day 9 – another review and another giveaway plus more!

Yes that’s right! Another review! This time by the lovely Shaz Goodwin. In addition to her review, there’s a little something extra, not to mention another givewaway. Today some lucky person can win A Shadow in the Past mouse pad!

Be sure to leave a comment at Shaz’s blog – Jera’s Jamboree for your chance to win!

Tomorrow I’m over at Carol E Wyer’s Facing 50 with Humour blog and she’s here at Celtic Connexions! See you then!

A Shadow in the Past International Blog Tour Day 8 – character interviews and more!

I’m back on the eastern side of the Atlantic Ocean today visiting first with Peggy Stanton who is interviewing my characters, Sarah and Robert. Now Peggy herself, is quite the character so it should be a lively time. Oh, I do hope those three behave themselves… Anyway, you can catch the interview at Peggy Stanton – Looking Out.

Then it’s back up to Bonnie Scotland and Janice Horton. We first met “virtually” when Janice launched Bagpipes & Bullshot and we quickly became fast friends. So far we remain virtual friends only but hopefully, we can rectify that in the coming year.

A Shadow in the Past International Blog Tour Day 7 – a day of rest???

Not as such. But, the three blogs I’m visiting today are all in my hometown of Brockville. I need an easy day like this to rest up after the hectic schedule I set myself up for. Yeesh… wouldn’t you think I could have been a bit more coordinated rather than jetting all over from point A to B and back again? Over and over again. Oh well, at least I’m only travelling virtually. If it were for real, I would have the UK and European stops together and the same with the North American ones.

So where am I today? Well, three members of my local writers’ group – Writers’ Ink – have agreed to host me.


My first stop today is with Joe Mossman. Back in January, Joe and I were guests on the local cable company’s program Reader’s Corner. You can see his interview with me on his blog Hope Joe has the coffee on. After my hectic schedule, I’ll need the caffeine jolt to get me kick-started this morning.


My second stop is at Chris Hanna’s My adventure in becoming at writer blog.


My last stop is with Dorothy Bush. She’s invited me for high tea. Hmm… wonder what we’ll be having? No coffee at this time of day, but a tipple of something just in keeping with the occasion. Dorothy blogs at Twisting in the Wind. Maybe if she hasn’t put her motorcycle away for the season, she’ll take me out for a short ride.

Drop back tomorrow and see what part of the world I’ll be visiting.

A Shadow in the Past International Blog Tour Day 6 – lots of travelling today!

Today truly brings in the International element into the title of my blog tour! Two countries – an ocean apart – in the same day!

I’m starting out this morning after making the short trip down from Scotland to be CentreStage with the lovely Nicky Wells.

And from there, I hop a flight to Canada where I’m Maureen Fisher’s guest at her blog Books by Maureen. Maureen is a fellow member of the Ottawa Romance Writers’ Association so I suspect her questions will be skewed in that direction. I hope they aren’t too difficult to answer.

A Shadow in the Past International Blog Tour Day 5 – I’m in Scotland with Rosemary Gemmell

Today I’m with the lovely Rosemary Gemmell over at her Ros’s Reading and Writing Blog. Many of you don’t know but if it weren’t for a post Rosemary put on her blog about the MuseItUp online writers conference last year, I wouldn’t have pitched my novel to 4RV Publishing and landed a contract. So thank you ever so much, Rosemary!

A Shadow in the Past International Blog tour Day 4 – My first review!

Okay, I’m not sure if I should be excited about my first review or quaking in my boots. This is all so new to me, I have no idea what to expect. So, follow me over to Nikki Bywater’s Books4U and read her impressions of my debut novel – A Shadow in the Past.

A Shadow in the Past International Blog Tour Day 2 – Giveaway at Rebecca Emin’s Ramblings of a Rusty Writer and a stop with fellow Ottawa Romance Writer Maggie Jagger

The launch day party is over and all is well. Perhaps a few sair heids amongst the partygoers but otherwise everyone seems to be fairly decent shape.

Good thing because today one lucky person who visits Rebecca Emin’s blog is going to win A Shadow in the Past tote bag!

Isn’t it a thing of beauty! Measuring 47 cm x 39 cm x 12 cm, it’s big enough to carry all your important purchases. I recently used mine when I attended Scene of the Crime and it was large enough to hold an umbrella, sweater (being prepared for changing weather), our registration kits, my “Menopause is Murder” fan, the five books I bought and my digital SLR camera and case.

Leave a comment at Rebecca Emin’s Ramblings of a Rusty Writer for your chance to win!


And after my visit with Rebecca, I’m jetting across the ocean to stop in and visit with author Maggie Jagger in the beautiful Canadian province of Quebec where we’ll talk about writerly things and being fellow members of the Ottawa Romance Writers’ Association.

You can visit Maggie’s blog at

A Shadow in the Past International Blog Tour Day 1 – It’s launch day at!

LAHE logo

It’s launch day for A Shadow in the Past over at!

The champagne corks are popping like crazy here in celebration!

What can I say, these lovely ladies and gents know how to throw a launch party!

Come on over and join in the fun!

Another Scene of the Crime Mystery Festival has come to an end…

After thunderstorms and chances of rain predicted for today, the weather cooperated and the sun stayed out all day. Best of all, it wasn’t as humid as its been in previous years so it wasn’t as uncomfortable inside the venues. It was great to renew acquaintances with fellow attendees from previous years and catch up with authors I’ve met on other occasions. And I met some new authors, too.

We left the mainland from the ferry dock in Kingston filled with anticipation of what the day would bring. What we didn’t know was Scene of the Crime was competing with a music festival.

My wee black car squeezed in between a Merc and a Mazda on the ferry dock on the mainland.
The windmills on Wolfe Island
Approaching the ferry dock in the village of Marysville on Wolfe Island

After a meet and greet with the authors and the Grant Allen award winning members of The Ladies Killing Circle, we made our way to the first venue (United Church) where four authors read from their works. Since we were there in plenty of time, I took the opportunity to buy some books.

Author Thomas Rendell-Curran
YA Author Y.S. Lee
Author D.J. McIntosh
Author John Moss
All of the authors and festival president Violette Malan

After a delicious church lunch, everyone had a chance to get their books signed by the authors and visit with old and new friends before making the trek to the Anglican Church where the authors we enjoyed reading from their works in the morning session, held a panel discussion led by author Vicki Delany.

D.J. McIntosh, Y.S. Lee, Thomas Rendell Curran, John Moss and Vicki Delany
Y.S. Lee answering one of the questions posed by Vicki

A Q&A session followed the author panel before we adjourned for a short break to allow the “ladies” to get into their glad rags and ready for their turn. The Grant Allen award is a handcrafted kaleidoscope. And normally there is only one presented. But since six lovely ladies make up the killing circle – six of these beautiful handcrafted items were crafted in the shape of a stick pen, all in presentation boxes in the shape of books.

The Ladies Killing Circle – Mary Jane Maffini, Linda Wiken, Barbara Fradkin, Joan Boswell, Sue Pike and Vicki Cameron
Mary Jane Maffini wrapping up the Ladies Killing Circle discussion before the presentation of the awards

Another delicious meal served up by the church ladies rounded up the day accompanied by the presentation of the short story contest winners (no, I didn’t enter this year… too tied up with edits for that) but I did tell people we sat with at various times throughout the day that my novel was coming out next month.

One of the books I bought today was the one that Y.S. (Ying) Lee read the prologue from. Well my husband was so drawn in to the story, that by the time we left the island, he’d read the first six chapters! That’s quite the achievement. Usually, he only reads tech manuals, computer books, magazines and newspapers. So him getting drawn into a novel is huge! Who knows, maybe eventually, he’ll pick mine up and read it.

With the music festival and the ferry schedule being interrupted to bring an ambulance across and back to the mainland again, things weren’t as orderly and on time as usual.

Normally, there isn’t a police presence on the island (so we heard) but when we got to the ferry dock, a police cruiser was parked next to the building. When the ferry approached, the officer driving pulled the car to the parking spot at the head of the queue.

Waiting for our ferry to the mainland
Fort Henry
Royal Military College or RMC as its better known by

All in all, it was a great day and I can’t wait until next year’s festival.

Nolichuck! TJ’s Wild Frontier Adventure – review


TJ’s just an ordinary fourteen year old kid with extraordinary problems at home and school:  A broken up family from his parents’ bitter divorce, evil bullies almost every afternoon, failing grades, boring classes, snobby girls, mean teachers, cut from basketball tryouts, few friends.

Life is rough for TJ Cockrell.

And then that mysterious little green book had to go and throw him into the past.  And not just any past, but into the untamed forbidding forests of 1802 eastern Tennessee along with the savage Indians, wild beasts, bloodthirsty robbers, backwoods ruffians, and log cabin living!  Yup, it’s definitely not 2011 Knoxville anymore.

And he thought his present life was bad news!  But TJ’s adventures are only beginning.  Along the way, he fights off killer beasts and bandits and braves, meets the young Davy Crockett, gains a world of confidence in himself, finds his first real love, and is befriended by a fantastic frontier family who really has it together.

When he returns to the present, he’s a brand new person––but there’s killers loose in his house, bullies waiting to beat him up at school, a pretty new girl at Highland High he’s hasn’t even seen yet.  And the aftermath of the little green book to deal with!

Links to Nolichuck!:



TJ Cockrell is an average fourteen year-old boy. Still grieving from his parent’s divorce and his young sister, Natalie, going to live with their mother, he struggles with classes at school – especially history, has little self-confidence which is compounded by the bullying he receives from the more popular students at his school.

When TJ discovers a mysterious green book in his father’s normally locked desk drawer, his adventure begins. He finds himself back in the year 1802 and quickly has to blend in with the people of that time. His self-confidence is tested far beyond his expectations but he rises to the occasion.

TJ is a likeable character and the reader cheers when things go well and despair when things go badly.

Divorce and bullying are prevalent in today’s society and this book portrays both sympathetically but realistically. This is an interesting read and teens, especially those who are in the same situation as TJ, will be able to relate to his situation.

I look forward to more from this author.

About the Author:

Jackson Keene is the pen name of Jack Olen King. Mr. Keene is a former advertising man and senior marketing executive with a love of writing and history. In his free time, among other things, he volunteer coaches youth basketball and is a coach-player on his own men s team. He lives in Plano, Texas, where he enjoys creating stories about less celebrated yet equally exciting periods of the past and present. Nolichuck is his debut novel.